This Walt Simonson THOR cover has a great story behind it, one that I heard at Mark Gruenwald’s memorial service.Mark was the editor on this portion of Walter’s THOR run.
So, this cover was ready to go to press, but Editor in Chief Jim Shooter didn’t like the Thor face that Walt had drawn, and he demanded that Gruenwald get a correction done. Mark believed that. if he brought the situation to Walt, it would escalate, possibly resulting in Simonson quitting the series.
Mark also knew, however, that Jim was going to be out of town on business the following week. So he came up with a plan. He had art director John Romita draw a new face for Thor on a piece of adhesive patch-paper. And then, once Shooter had left the building, Gruenwald peeled off and discarded the patch. If Shooter came back with a complaint, Mark intended to claim that the patch must have fallen off at some point while the cover was in transit.
Weeks later, the make-ready for this cover came in from the printer, and Shooter called Gruenwald down to his office. Mark figured that he was going to get it, and readied his defense. And then, Shooter held up the cover as mark entered and said, :
“See? Doesn’t it look a lot better this way?”